Offaly priest to retire after 54 years

Justin Kelly

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Justin Kelly

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Offaly priest to retire after 54 years

Offaly priest to retire after 54 years

The Offaly community of Clara is preparing to say goodbye to their parish priest, Fr Patrick Keary, after almost 15 years in the town.

Fr Keary was ordained in 1965 in Maynooth and served in St Finian’s from 1965 to 1988 and was later appointed as CC Kilcloon that same year and CC at Holy Family in 1992.

He arrived in Clara in 2005 where is served as parish priest and was appointed as Vicar Forane of Clara Deanery in 2006.

Bishop of the Meath, of which Clara is a part, Thomas Deenihan, thanked Fr Keary for his lifetime work for the Diocese and the people he served.

Speaking to the Offaly Express, Clara-based Offaly County councillor, Dervill Dolan, said: “I am sorry to hear that Fr Keary is retiring as Parish Priest of Clara but he has earned himself a well-deserved rest after his 14 years in Clara and 54 years in the priesthood."

"In my dealings with Fr Keary I have found him to be very helpful and a good man with a genuine pastoral nature. I am glad that Fr Keary is staying with us at the Parochial House, in Clara, and I wish him a long and healthy retirement," Cllr Dolan continued.

As a result of Fr Keary's retirement, Fr Joe Deegan is to become the parish priest in Clara. 

Fr Conor Magee, CC in Clara will move to the Holy Family, Drogheda, while Fr Cyprian Solomon, CC Clara will move to Saint Mary’s Drogheda and CC Holy Family, Drogheda. 

The changes take effect on June 17.